Vulture Awareness Day – Saturday 2/9/17
Did you know that about 50 years ago there were thousands of vultures in Israel’s skies?
Sadly, today the vultures in Israel are critically endangered. From those thousands, less than 200 remain!
As in previous years, International Vulture Awareness Day is being commemorated with the aim of increasing awareness of the threats to vultures in Israel and around the world. In recent years the population of breeding vultures in Israel has dwindled significantly, mainly due to poisoning, electrocution and hunting. Ramat Hanadiv joins the publicity effort and this year, will once again run activities about vultures for the whole family, as well as tours to the vulture acclimation cage located in the nature park.
The acclimation cage at Ramat Hanadiv houses a vulture breeding nucleus aimed at reinforcing and expanding their population. The breeding nucleus comprises individuals that cannot survive in nature, but in the future their chicks will be released to produce young and strengthen their species in our region. A number of breeding nuclei have been established in Israel, the first of which was at Ramat Hanadiv.
In the 1990s, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, in partnership with the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel and the Israel Electricity Corporation established a project called “Spreading Wings Over the Vultures”, which aims to rehabilitate and save the vulture population in Israel. Some of the project’s efforts include breeding chicks in captivity for release to nature.
In recent years, vast resources have been invested in the breeding nucleus at Ramat Hanadiv. The cage was renovated and adapted for breeding by crippled vultures, and the number of vultures in the cage increased from 2 to 9. Some of the vultures were brought from zoos outside of Israel – in Armenia and Cyprus – while the rest are Israeli.
In the last year we witnessed breeding by a pair of vultures – an Armenian male and an Israeli female. The pair began rearing the chick in early April and it will soon leave the nest. It will be transferred to the acclimation cage at Carmel Hai-Bar Nature Reserve or Gamla Nature Reserve and after a period of acclimation, at about 3 years of age, it will be released to nature.
The public is invited to take part in the activities: a guided tour to the acclimation cage, a lecture and a craft workshop.
- 09:00 – 10:30 A guided tour to the vulture cage – led by Amir Arnon, Head of Conservation and Wildlife Management at Ramat Hanadiv. Participation in the tour is free, but advanced reservation is required.
- 10:00 – 14:00 A special craft workshop in which we will build a 3D wooden model of a vulture. The workshop costs 10 shekels per person. The workshop will run continuously and is intended for participants from the age of 3 years and up.
- 12:00 – 13:00 A lecture by the Israeli nature photographer, Eyal Bartov, on: Birds of Prey – Kings of the Skies. Why did birds of prey become the symbols of kings and caesars, a symbol of strength, speed and power throughout the world?
For details and registration: 04-6298111 ext. 4
special craft workshop - 3D wooden model of a vulture